While long-time readers know I have little interest in audacious uniforms (though there's little reason to complain in a get-off-my-lawn manner, since it doesn't matter), the underlying value of the endorsement deals is interesting.
Block Six Analytics and SponsorPitch broke down the 68-team NCAA tournament field and found 76 percent of the schools involved (52 would be the raw number). But the company ran the numbers and declared that Adidad schools (which include Cincinnati, Indiana, Kansas, Louisville, Michigan, N.C. State, Notre Dame and UCLA) have a collective 45 percent chance of producing the national champion.
That's fun and all, but the most intriguing tidbit was that Nike pays an averages of $1.67 million a year to outfit a top-50 RPI team, while Adidas shells out $3.23 million per top-50 team.
The conclusion to be drawn on the surface is Adidas has more to lose if one of its high-profile teams gets upset and loses exposure earlier in the tournament --- yet an intriguing twist, it's Nike that needs a fair number of its schools (Georgetown, Gonzaga, Saint Louis) to do well because their deals don't include a major-college football program.
--- Patrick Stevens